Overview

Born 1935 in Stockholm and educated at the Royal Academy of Art and at Konstfack University College of Art, Craft and Design.

 

How can Eva Lange's art best be described+ Her sculptures are often seen as abstract - form for the sake of form itself. There is some truth to this; Eva loves form. She loves working with form. The making in itself is, to a large extent lust driven journey towards purity, that she often describes as immanent in sculpture. The "issue" is to get it out. This says something about Eva but it omits the most central in her art; in itself it is figurative. There is a model.

 

Where does she search for these models? Eva's works on one side come with titles such as Poppy, the Wave and Rain. On the other hand, she also names work Angel or Soul. The first category requires no guessing, the titles evoke no doubt that the models are to be found in nature. In the second category, she makes it harder for the viewer. Is there an objective model for the shape of an angel or a soul? Maybe not, but here Eva encourages us to stretch the meaning of the figurative.

 

There is a formal tradition for depicting angels and the soul. Eva's art often looks back and she often comments or refers to art history. The wings of the Angel, the way they are usually depicted are distinctly visible in the sculpture. The vertical power of the Soul's lively form brings to mind a playing ray of light from heaven. The titles also refer to concepts with a strong position in the collective consciousness. Even if they lack a real form, there is definitely a sounding board that the sculptures can vibrate with. The result is rather the depiction of an idea, but still an attempt to depict.

 

To Eva, the depicting is not to create a perfect copy of the model - in spite of her working mainly with plaster to sculpt, a material that has been used for copies since the renaissance. The ambition is rather to reduce the form to a singular morpheme; the smallest significant unit of the language. What makes the poppy a poppy, and not a cornflower? A botanist can answer that question by adding up the most important characters of the flowers. Between the species, sometimes the morphological differences can be so small that they require a loupe. In other cases, not even a DNA-analysis can differentiate the species with certainty. Why? Nature is chaotic. But Eva does not have a taxonomical starting point, rather a platonic. The poppy as an idea; rain as an idea. What sets these depictions aside from the depiction of an angel or the soul?

 

The attempt to use constant reduction to liberate a form from the mass, can be likened to the way the wind moves over cliffs and buildings. Repetition. Erosion. A Levant over temples. An immovable body shapes by the movements of the surroundings. The sculptures of the Antique era were one painted in bright colours. Today they are white and to our minds it's hard to picture them in bright colours. Eva's sculptures are covered in a fog of dust where hands and small movements of air creates imprints - a game of constantly new, fleeting images. There is something of the volatility of fire in these earthly shapes. The elements. God was a sculpture that blew life into clay by Adam's nostrils.

 

/ Erik Jönsson

Visby, September 2021

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